My son left for Parris Island early this month. Lifelong dream to be a Marine. We want to give him something he will like. He loves military style rifles. He has a M1 carbine and basically took my Garand. Lol.
I know he would like a M14 style gun. The SA M1A seems to fit the bill. I’m leaning toward the straight traditional wood stocked M1A.
I know SA isn’t the best out there but are they not worth buying? Any preferences to model? Any info is more than I have right now. Thanks.
|Fighting the good fight|
https://www.fulton-armory.com/M14-Rifles.aspx is a good option, depending on your budget.
If you're wanting to get him a M14 clone, then a traditional rifle is fine. But if you're wanting something that's a little handier/more functional, try the M1A Scout-Squad or Fulton Scout. They're also offered in a wooden stock, and I prefer the shorter 18" barrel for actual use.
And you can make it even shorter by installing a gas lock front sight and a smaller muzzle device. That's what I did with mine.
I'm sure Benny6 will be by shortly and offer way more knowledge and specifics than I can, but...
First, CONGRATS to you, and the newest Devil Dog!
Springfield puts out a good rifle.
Yes, there's better out there, but you can't really go wrong with a Springfield.
What's your son like? Would he appreciate an "old school" rifle more than something more modern?
If he's the "old school", nostalgic type, look at the M1A Standard
If he's into the more modern stuff, there's nothing wrong with the M1A loaded.
"When its time to shoot, shoot. Dont talk!"
“What the government is good at is collecting taxes, taking away your freedoms and killing people. It’s not good at much else.” —Author Tom Clancy
He’s eclectic. He loves AR’s and SCAR’s. He also loves his 1942 M1 Carbine and my 1943 M1 Garand. I think the traditional look is the way to go. Fulton Armory stuff looks nice.
I just received my Fulton enhanced service model with a Criterion barrel, stock is beautiful fit and finish fantastic, mounting a scope any day now to try it. They do nice work
|Pursuing the wicked|
I think the SOCOM would be a great, practical modern choice.
BULA!!! They make really nice ones. I love mine.
|Yeah, that M14 video guy...|
I would normally offer to do a custom build, but I'm in the process of moving out of Oregon and it will be some months before I get my license set up in Florida.
In the interim, I suggest a 22" walnut configuration with a medium weight barrel.
Even if it's a Springfield Loaded, it can be made to shoot out to past 600 yards by an experienced M14 plumber. My recommendations for a factory built rifle are:
-LRB (very meticulous but most expensive, has a forged receiver, and has the longest lead time)
-Fulton Armory (very meticulous but built with a cast receiver)
-Springfield Armory loaded model in a walnut stock.
I cannot recommend a Bula at this time, unless it's built by me, as I've seen a slip in the assembly quality lately and I need to see more examples of corrected issues from their factory rifles.
A custom built Bula rivals a LRB and Fulton. I have built for members of this forum before.
Owner, TonyBen, LLC, Type-01 FFL
www.tonybenm14.com (Site under construction).
Good information thank you. This is an area I am completely out of my depth.
I own a Loaded with the wood stock and love it. I bought before the damn pandemic when SA was offering the promotion and received a scope mount which I didn't think I would ever use. However that changed when I discovered how much my eyes have taken a dive.
|Fighting the good fight|
If you're wanting a shorty M1A, anything you can do with a SOCOM you can do with a Scout Squad set up like mine, but without the SOCOM's overly wide proprietary rear sight and proprietary gas system. (The Scout Squad uses standard M14/M1A parts.)
By ditching the Scout-Squad's traditional front sight/muzzle device, and installing a gas lock front sight and a shorter muzzle device or even just a thread protector, you end up with a M1A that's the same overall length as a SOCOM, but with a 1.75" longer barrel length for better ballistics, better sights, your choice of type of muzzle device, and all standard operating system parts.
I had a SOCOM before I got my Scout-Squad, and I sold it as soon as I realized this Scout-Squad setup rendered it totally inferior/redundant.
|The cake is a lie!|
There's also the Springfield Tanker if you just want to buy something off the shelf that is wood and short.
Having gone through basic marksmanship training in the lovely resort known as Parris Island in 1971, I would only want a standard size M-14. The "handier" carbine or tanker sized rifles didn't exist at that time, at least in the USMC.
|Void Where Prohibited|
I went with an LRB M14 when I bought mine.
"If Gun Control worked, Chicago would look like Mayberry, not Thunderdome" - Cam Edwards
|Spread the Disease|
Another vote for LRB. I'll be sending my M25 assembly to benny6 to bed once he's settled in at his new place and my McMillan stock arrives. I'm very impressed with the quality of the LRB receiver and love the integrated optics mount.
-- Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past me I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain. --
|Prepared for the Worst, Providing the Best|
I'm curious, as I'm interested in eventually buying an M1A, but don't have the money to spend at the moment...what is the difference between the major brands? None of them are what I'd call cheap, but the SAIs are a good deal cheaper than the other offerings. From what I gather LRB offers some premium build quality, forged receiver, and attention to detail over some of the other offerings, but what sets say a Fulton Armory apart from an SAI that makes it worth double the price?
|Fighting the good fight|
The "Tanker" is just a SOCOM put in a wood stock with the rail removed. Same drawbacks as the polymer-stocked SOCOM with regards to ballistics, sights, and proprietary parts.
|Age Quod Agis|
I have the Scout Squad and love it. It's accurate, reliable (if you keep it remotely clean) and easy to handle.
I've shot the full size M1A and prefer the Scout, but I'm not shooting beyond 300 yards, and even that infrequently.
"I will fight until Hell freezes over and then fight on the ice."
Captain William Mattingly at the Battle of Bulltown, West Virginia 1863
|You have cow?|
I lift cow!
Hard to beat the classic 22 inch with nice wood.
Shorter is handier, synthetics or other stocks might be more versatile. But the original has soul. Nice walnut or birth stock.
RogueJSK is spot on here. The 18” guns from SA and Fulton Armory are better choices because they retain the original gas system.
The modified gas system of the SOCOM 16” is prone to cracking /failure.
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